Strangers Who Seem Familiar?

Jac21

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#1
Been thinking about posting this although its not especially fortean, just wondered if anyone had experienced something similar? Also looked for a similar thread but was toyed with by the search function. :?
A good few years ago i used to livein an inner city area, and every so often whilst out and about i'd run into a woman that i felt that i recognised. There was something about her that struck me from the first time i saw her, i felt like i should know her. For her part she always caught my eye, smiled, said hello or hi how are you sort of thing, the way an aquaintance would. She didnt go out of her way to stop or anything, it was all in passing on the street, but i used to see her every so often and each time it was the same. The first few times it happened i racked my brains trying to remember where we'd met/been introduced as that was how it seemed, but i know that that had never happened as she was an extrordinarily striking woman, very tall, very dark skinned, long hair done in tiny braids, delicate features, maybe ethiopian or the like. In short, i would have remembered if we had met as i had no aquaintances even vaguely resembling her, and although now writing it down it doesnt sound anything very much, in the context of the area and other people's behavior, it was at the time quite perplexing, (so much so that im still pondering it 20-odd years later.) It had got to the point that i had decided to actually strike up some sort of conversation with her at the risk of looking like a loon just to satisfy my curiosity about her, unfortunately life intervened and i left the area never to return. So i suppose my question is has anybody else met someone in passing that they feel they should know/they remember on some level even though that person is a stranger?
 
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#2
Yes, happened to me ten years ago. I went to visit a friend in another country and she introduced me to a girl she had met over there. I had never met this girl and yet I felt I should know her as she looked and sounded familiar. I even asked her and she said she had the same feeling about me.

We went through everything, primary school, secondary school, uni, holidays, etc and at no point could we find a single point of reference. She had lived in Croydon, and I was born near Tottenham but I left the area only a few years later and I have never been into Croydon so although that was the only thing we had in common, it still wasn't enough.

I wonder now if it was just she bore a likeness to someone, although who I don't know and I still can't explain why she felt she knew me.

Occasionally I have a similar feeling but it tends to be when I bump into someone in a supermarket and it turns out I know them from work - when you see people out of their usual context, it can throw you!
 

Jac21

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#3
ah good, glad its not just me then. There have been occasions when ive bumped into someone who obviously has a much better recollection than i do and have chatted all the while thinking 'aargh wots your name/where do i know you from,' type of thing, but generally after mulling it over for a couple of hours it comes to me.
In the situation in the op however i knew that there was no way i'd ever met her but felt so strongly like i should. On some level we connected and i just wish i'd taken the opportunity to speak to her when i could :(
 

Spudrick68

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#4
I remember walking through Preston years ago and a bloke passed me who I thought was an aquaintance but couldn't recall where I knew him from. So I said 'hello' in a familiar tone, he just looked at me strangely. It was only a few minutes later why I recalled him, he was Preston North End's goalkeeper Andy Lonergan. I felt rather foolish afterwards.
 

Jac21

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#5
Ah the other side of the coin. i've done much the same thing, complaining loud and vehemently about some crap comestible in Tescos to what i supposed was my bf only to look up from my diatribe and find he'd wandered off and i'd been earholing some poor random man who was wearing the same colour coat. Time to beat a hasty retreat...
 

kmossel

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#6
Spudrick68 said:
I remember walking through Preston years ago and a bloke passed me who I thought was an aquaintance but couldn't recall where I knew him from. So I said 'hello' in a familiar tone, he just looked at me strangely. It was only a few minutes later why I recalled him, he was Preston North End's goalkeeper Andy Lonergan. I felt rather foolish afterwards.
I did much the same thing once, nodding and smiling at a guy in my gym in Amsterdam whom I was sure I knew from work or as a friend-of-a-friend. He gave me a quizzical look, and sort of responded. It wasn't until I was on my way back home when I realized he was semi-famous Dutch actor/singer Thomas Acda...
 

escargot

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#7
I have a job where I can meet 50 or more new people in a week so I get this a lot. My idea is that people are 'types'. Once you've met one of a type, you'll meet another, and they'll remind you of the first.

Once I was working with a very nice, quite dressy lady whom i was sure I recognised and knew well. Couldn't put my finger on where I remembered her from.
In the middle of the night, I woke up and it came to me - she'd been in an advert on the telly. :lol:
 

Mal_Adjusted

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#8

Jac21

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#9
well im familiar with it now-thanks.
Chewed through the first link-wotever next? no doubt it'll be available at stores in the not too distant future, :roll:
lucky im in the wrong demographic i think.
i'll have to look at the other in the evening when things are slightly less fraught.
 

emina

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#10
kmossel said:
Spudrick68 said:
I remember walking through Preston years ago and a bloke passed me who I thought was an aquaintance but couldn't recall where I knew him from. So I said 'hello' in a familiar tone, he just looked at me strangely. It was only a few minutes later why I recalled him, he was Preston North End's goalkeeper Andy Lonergan. I felt rather foolish afterwards.
I did much the same thing once, nodding and smiling at a guy in my gym in Amsterdam whom I was sure I knew from work or as a friend-of-a-friend. He gave me a quizzical look, and sort of responded. It wasn't until I was on my way back home when I realized he was semi-famous Dutch actor/singer Thomas Acda...
Same here! I was doing my christmas shopping a few years back when I saw a familiar face heading towards me. I did the quick check; work mate? - no; friend of a friend? - no; met him in a pub once? - no... Anyway, I ran out of thinking time and had to make the decision; Say hello or not? I'd just decided to try and dodge him when suddenly he looked straight at me and saw me looking back at him. An awkward milisecond passed, so I nodded and said 'Hi.' He did the same.

I thought nothing of it until a couple of days later, I was watching the TV and it dawned on me who it was... The bass player from the band 'Travis'! Now, to be honest, bass players are usually pretty anonymous at the best of times and I've never even been a fan of Travis either. I'm quite sure that even if you'd taken me to an identity parade that day and asked me to pick "any member of Travis" out of a line-up, I probably wouldn't have been able to do it. At the time though, I was in the habbit of having MTV on in the background while I was doing the housework, and they did have a hit record about that time, so it must have been a purely subliminal thing :D It just makes me wonder how much we take in sub-consciously though! :shock:

A second episode also springs to mind. I went down the pub with a mate of mine and happened to bump into another guy I new, so I introduced them to one another. One hesitantly pointed at the other and said, "Wait a minute. You look familiar. Where do I know you from?" The other guy looked back and said that he vaguely recognised him too. Anyway, we took a seat and the banter continued, but it was starting to bug them how they knew each other. Duly, we got the obvious questions out the way. "Whare do you live / work. ?", "Do you know so and so?" "Ever go to such and such a place? etc." They drew a blank, and this continued for some time. After half an hour or so (and that's no exageration!) it clicked with one of them! ...They used to share a flat! :roll:

They had a good old laugh about it. Apparently, they'd only lived together for a few weeks or months but worked different shifts, so rarely saw each other and communicated via notes on the fridge etc.

I think it's been said before, but we really need a face-palm icon on this board :D
 

escargot

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#11
I took a couple of my kids and their friends to see Suede years ago. At the time my elder daughter had close-cropped hair and resembled Delores o'Riordan, who was very famous at the time. People were staring and whispering.

She jokily starting camping up an Irish accent and went up to the balcony with her boyfriend so that as many people as possible could 'recognise' her. All through the concert, people were turning and pointing at her. Dunno how she got out alive! :lol:

So if you spotted Delores o'Riordan at a Suede concert somewhere in the north of England, you probably saw my daughter really. ;)
 
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#12
escargot1 said:
I have a job where I can meet 50 or more new people in a week so I get this a lot. My idea is that people are 'types'. Once you've met one of a type, you'll meet another, and they'll remind you of the first.
OMG I have always thought that myself but never voiced it outloud. I struggle to identify faces sometimes and so in my mind, I have different types and I often try and memorise people based on that.
 

wairddeb

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#13
Many years ago I worked for a small company which worked solely for a single, much larger client company. I was at the client company's smart Xmas do, not knowing many other people there but was reassured to find that the chap seated next to me at dinner was very friendly and easy to talk to. Very familiar in fact. I looked at the name card on his place setting and his surname was familiar too. Turned out that he was the brother of an old university friend! Small world etc...
 

rynner2

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#14
My idea is that people are 'types'. Once you've met one of a type, you'll meet another, and they'll remind you of the first.
Or maybe they're your rellies!
Is that stranger opposite you a distant cousin?
We could be rubbing shoulders unwittingly with relatives every day, according to new analysis
By John Bingham, Social Affairs Editor
7:10PM BST 05 Jul 2015

If that person sitting opposite you on the bus or train looks strangely familiar – or even just strange – there could be a very good reason.
Genealogists believe that even in cities such as London with fast-changing and increasingly international populations, a typical bus passenger unwittingly travels with a distant relative on one in every four journeys.

On the Underground the potential for squeezing into a carriage next to an unknown cousin is even greater, they believe.
A typical passenger shares the Tube network will have as many as 12,000 unknown relations on any given day.

Meanwhile those going on a cruise might want to think twice before throwing themselves into a passionate holiday romance with a mysterious stranger they meet on board.
Up to 20 of their fellow passengers are likely to be distant relatives.

The startling estimates emerge from new analysis of the British population by AncestryDNA, a new genetic analysis service from Ancestry, the genealogy website.
Using computer modelling which factors in shifting birth rates and family sizes over around 200 years, the group estimates that a typical Briton has 193,000 living cousins – if everyone from first cousin through to sixth cousins are included.

...

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/11719550/Is-that-stranger-opposite-you-a-distant-cousin.html
 

Bigphoot2

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#16
Or maybe they're your rellies!
Is that stranger opposite you a distant cousin?
We could be rubbing shoulders unwittingly with relatives every day, according to new analysis
By John Bingham, Social Affairs Editor
7:10PM BST 05 Jul 2015

If that person sitting opposite you on the bus or train looks strangely familiar – or even just strange – there could be a very good reason.
Genealogists believe that even in cities such as London with fast-changing and increasingly international populations, a typical bus passenger unwittingly travels with a distant relative on one in every four journeys.

On the Underground the potential for squeezing into a carriage next to an unknown cousin is even greater, they believe.
A typical passenger shares the Tube network will have as many as 12,000 unknown relations on any given day.

Meanwhile those going on a cruise might want to think twice before throwing themselves into a passionate holiday romance with a mysterious stranger they meet on board.
Up to 20 of their fellow passengers are likely to be distant relatives.

The startling estimates emerge from new analysis of the British population by AncestryDNA, a new genetic analysis service from Ancestry, the genealogy website.
Using computer modelling which factors in shifting birth rates and family sizes over around 200 years, the group estimates that a typical Briton has 193,000 living cousins – if everyone from first cousin through to sixth cousins are included.

...

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/11719550/Is-that-stranger-opposite-you-a-distant-cousin.html

I was doing my family tree a few years back and, on the web found a cousin of my mother's that she hadn't seen since he was a child. I e-mailed them some family photos and they e-mailed back to say that they knew me. At the time I worked in a teacher training college and they were head teachers who would attend meetings there and we'd often chat in passing. I'd been talking to relatives for nearly 10 years and didn't realise it.
As Chick Murray said "It's a small world but I wouldn't like to paint it."
 

Naughty_Felid

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#17
Met a guy at work with the same surname. He looked like me and we both realized that we must be related. It turns out his ancestors left the area my family is from about 4 generations back and obivously lost touch with the main branch of the family. Sadly I soon left the area and lost touch again.
 

Coal

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#18
I play cricket against a team which came from the village that my maternal great grandfather came from (some 100 miles from where my grandparents lived their lives) and there were five people in the team with the same surname and there was a collective strong resemblance to my grandfather. It was a bit odd. (Plus I broke a bone in my foot.)
 
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#19
Met a guy at work with the same surname. He looked like me and we both realized that we must be related. It turns out his ancestors left the area my family is from about 4 generations back and obivously lost touch with the main branch of the family. Sadly I soon left the area and lost touch again.
Your work was connected somehow?
 

Iris

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#21
I can remember as a child travelling with my father on a tram. he got talking to the woman next to him and it turned out she was a distant cousin.. This often happened when we were out and about.
 

Swifty

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#23
I was in a supermarket yesterday when an old woman smiled broadly at me and asked how my Mum was. I'd never seen her before in my life and she'd almost certainly never met my Mum so I answered "She's very well thank you" with another broad smile, thinking that would be the end of it. After she decided to chat with me for a bit longer I had to be honest with her and inform her that she'd got me mixed up with someone else, that my Mum in fact lived in France with my Dad. "But you look just like him?" she said ...
 

Naughty_Felid

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#25
I thought that if you were doing the same job, looked alike and had the same name it might be something for the doppleganger thread.

Could be, although there was some deffo similar traits around the mouth and eyes although I'm not sure we looked that similar. It was the surname that gave it away. I do have a pic of him, I'm sure he won't mind me uploading it here.

 

Mythopoeika

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#27
Could be, although there was some deffo similar traits around the mouth and eyes although I'm not sure we looked that similar. It was the surname that gave it away. I do have a pic of him, I'm sure he won't mind me uploading it here.

Whoa! Where did you get that picture of me?
 

Ghost In The Machine

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#29
Growing up, my mother's arch enemy in the village was the lady two doors down.

Forty years on, doing genealogy myself, and discovering my great grandma disowned her own family - I'm tracked down via email by a local keen genealogist, who has been looking for any descendants of my great grandma since the 1950s as apparently she had broke off all relationships with her entire birth family.

Turns out the elderly lady emailing me was my mum's arch enemy - she and mum were grand daughters of two siblings. She had been looking for us since 1950 something. We were two doors down all along. This mlady who had not got on with my mum, adored my mum's sister. My aunty died just after the ex neighbour found out they were related so she never knew.

I have one of those faces people constantly 'recognise'. One of my best friends first spoke to me because I looked remarkably like her son's music teacher. Several other people at a party stared at me for hours, before they plucked up the courage to ask if I was a certain actor (I'm not). Another male friend was constantly telling me, over and over, of the woman he had met at uni who looked like my twin. (200 miles away). He ended up going out with her! Most bizarre, recently, my kids' friend says I look like a white version of his mum (she's black). One of my kids thinks I'm the twin of his teacher. Someone else did a double take when they saw a certain comedienne's biography as I look identical to the pic of her on the cover (I do, strangely, but that's the only one I'll concede). People always think I look like other people and I am fairly certain I don't.
 
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